Youth Arts in the Parks

student artwork
detail from the 2016 Wildflower Contest best in show winner: Red Trillium, by Presley Peterson
Art Contest Poster

Youth Arts in Parks Wildflower Contest

Has nature ever inspired you to do something creative? Local students can celebrate their creativity through the Youth Arts in the Parks program. This youth art contest and April art exhibition at Tamarack allows students to serve as community leaders and raise awareness of Appalachia’s natural diversity and parks. Their works will inspire community connections to local ecology, as well as outdoor stewardship. Student participants in this art program will also have the opportunity to explore the business of art and its role in economic development.

This wildflower art contest is open to all K – 12 grade students in Fayette, Nicholas, Raleigh, and Summers Counties. Students may use a variety of mediums to create a work of art inspired by a spring Appalachian wildflower native to the New River Gorge area of West Virginia.

View the winning entries of the 2020 contest below.

painting of a flame azalea

Wildflower Art Contest Overview & Rules

Check the overview and rules page for all the information you need to enter the next Appalachian Spring Wildflower Art Contest.

Silver bell-like flowers hanging from a branch

Wildflower Art Contest Species Checklist

Check the species list for a list of native wildflowers that you can use for the Appalachian Spring Wildflower Art Contest.

white and pink wildflower

Wildflower Art Contest Species Reference

Check here for photo references of species you can use for the Appalachian Spring Wildflower Art Contest.


Team Habitat Challenge

In 2020, the Team Habitat Challenge will be added again to the wildflower art contest. To help other people learn about Appalachian ecology, two students teamed together to create art focused on a specific ecological concept.

painting of flower and bee
Purple Trillium with Bee, by Evan Adkins and Abby Thompson

Pollinator Pals Grades K - 2

Pollination is an important process in every ecosystem. A variety of pollinators help plants take that next natural step from bloom to seed. Common plant pollinators include bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, ants, and other creatures. Look for pollinators the next time you see a blooming plant.
painting of flower from roots to petals
Crested Iris by Abbey Bostic and Riley Harrell

Powerful Petals Grades 3 - 5

Every plant has its own unique design, from the color of the flower petals, the shape and placement of the leaves, to how the roots grow under the ground. Each plant’s physical features help it adapt and survive in its environment. Take a closer look at the parts of plants next time you are outdoors.

Leaving Legacy Grades 6 - 8

People love to play in natural environments, especially parks. These human activities can greatly impact these habitats when people aren’t careful. Practice Leave No Trace Outdoor Ethics ( during your outdoor adventures to reduce impacts on the enviroment. Enjoy the natural wonders found in parks, but be sure to leave what you find during each visit.
painting of stream with rhododendrons
River Rhododendron by Lily Burr and Chloe Perdue

Habitat Happenings Grades 9 - 12

Plants are an important part of an ecosystem. A place to see flora, fauna, and the non-living parts of an environment, the natural things found in a habitat contribute to making such places a home for plants and animals. Mixed mesophytic forest, mountain streams, and Appalachian flatrock community are just a few of the many habitat types found in the New River Gorge. Explore the diversity of habitats found in public parks.

Check out winning artwork from previous years.


Last updated: April 2, 2020

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 246, 104 Main Street
Glen Jean, WV 25846


(304) 465-0508

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